Pixel 101: Challenging the CX in Smartphone Industry
Google unleashed some mighty products promising unique customer experiences during its “Made By Google” event on 4 October. Out of all these new innovative devices, Pixel handset shone as the star. Artificial intelligence (AI) development and integration of hardware with software are the key themes of this new phone. If you would like to find out more, you’ll find what you need to know about Pixel and what new experiences it offers you here.
Changing the Smartphone Camera and AI Game
Nexus was abandoned for a pretty solid reason. Pixel is the new flagship smartphone offering pure Google experience inside and outside. Unlike the Nexus line, hardware manufacturer HTC takes a back seat. This transition promises a smoother user interface in 5” screen Pixel and its larger version, 5.5” screen Pixel XL.
There are two qualities of Pixel you should pay attention to: camera performance and Google Assistant. Just as CEO Sundar Pichai highlighted during the event, Pixel scored the highest out of any other smartphone on DxOMark Mobile (89 out of 100) test. Its 12.3MP rear and 8MP front cameras are automatically set to HDR+ mode which layers simultaneously taken photos for the best visual quality and was developed heavily since Nexus 6P. You can capture videos at 4K quality at 30fps and 1080p quality at 120fps with both phones. And here’s the bomb: You can upload unlimited amount of full-resolution photos to the Cloud with Pixel. This means zero storage costs for your visual projects and a gigantic challenge to other companies using the cloud technology for image storage. As a customer, you can expect to reap the benefits of this challenge very soon.
As for the Assistant, when you press down on the software home button or speak out the classic “OK, Google” command, this new bot based application will come out to play. You would be correct in guessing its rivalry to Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Microsoft’s Cortana. Just like its competitors, Assistant goes one step further than Google Now’s simple voice search; Assistant is able to make reservations, help you navigate, and more in a conversation-like manner. More entries to mobile AI market means more pressure on the companies to produce better and more intelligent software at affordable prices.
Hardware, Design, and Price Details
Customers expect fast and unhindered service, starting right from the beginning of their experience. Google knows this well, so Pixel will come out of its box with the newest Android OS Nougat, Allo chat-app, and Duo video-calling app already installed. You will be able to carry out your chats on the Pixel’s 5” screen with 1080p display quality and Pixel XL’s 5.5” screen with Quad HD display quality. For an uninterrupted experience throughout the day, Pixel XL’s 3,450mAh battery and the Pixel’s 2,770mAh battery promise 7 hours of battery life after just 15 minutes of charging. System speed is boosted as both devices run on 2.15 GHz 64-bit processor and 4GB of RAM; whether there will be lags with more installed updates remains to be tested out. Normal business as usual, USB-C port, Bluetooth 4.2, and a 3.5mm headphone jack are all included. This last point was especially underlined during the event as an obvious nod to iPhone 7.
About the outlook of this new device, the design is pretty standard and smooth without a physical home button. On its back, there’s a broad glossy plate with the fingerprint button in the middle. The Live Cases option is continued, meaning you can decorate your phone case with images from Google Earth and Trends. Available in black and silver colours (no blue yet), Pixel is going to be shipped out on 20 October in the UK; ready to be preordered today. The prices for Pixel phones are £599 for 32GB and £699 for the 128GB one. For Pixel XL, 32GB of memory sets you back £719 while 128GB is priced at £819. You can also pick up the Pixel for an upfront cost of £79.99 and the Pixel XL for £159.99, both on a £42 a month with 6GB of data allowance on Vodafone in the UK. These prices are certainly more geared towards an upper segment than Nexus but comments on performance-to-price ratio have to wait until the phone is out.
It goes without saying that Pixel is Daydream View VR compatible. You can read more about this new VR in our next post.
So, what kind of changes can you expect from Pixel? Entering the Samsung and Apple-dominated smartphone market with its (mostly) own high-segment phone, Google is pushing its competition to innovate in AI and cloud technologies. Expect even better hardware-software integration and braver AI improvements for next year’s designs. This spells out faster and multichannel connections for everyone. You’d better start getting used to it soon.
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Google's biggest hardware event of the year could've been, emm, bigger. Today Google's San Francisco press event…venturebeat.com